All tourists visiting Belize in Central America love its nature and its way of life. It is an underestimated Caribbean country where you can find some natural wonders that cannot be found in other countries in the region. In addition to that, Belize is a world-renown offshore zone and you do not have to visit the country solely for pleasure. You can also achieve some business goals such as opening a bank account, for example, if you take a short trip to Belize.
Places to visit in Belize
If you think of Belize as a third-world country that lacks modern amenities, you are mistaken. In the middle of the jungle, you can find Jaguar’s Paw restaurant for example, and it is a luxurious place indeed. Imagine sitting in an air-conditioned room with huge stained-glass windows and looking at the lush jungle forest outside. Enormous burdocks, curly thick creepers, trees with trunks so wide that it takes five people to encircle them… A blue tropical river nearby flows through 5 monumental and astonishing caves and you can go on a rafting tour down the river… A few minutes from the restaurant’s door, there is an entrance to a unique crystalline cave. Wilderness and comfort combined.
You can also hike up the mountain to reach Mountain Pine Ridge that is the oldest plateau in the entire Central America. It is a protected area and there you will find a unique combination of coniferous and deciduous forests: Caribbean pines grow close to tropical trees with large leaves. On the plateau, you will also find Five Sisters hotel that is one of the most romantic Belizean hotels sitting next to a waterfall. You can have lunch at the edge of a deep canyon and enjoy a bird’s-eye view of its bottom where the water falls from above.
If you are lucky, a huge blue butterfly may join you at lunch and it would not mind if you let it try some fruits. There are five butterfly farms in the vicinity and the farms are frequented by tourists. The farms’ main purpose is to serve as tourist attractions but butterflies have one more interesting use in Belize. In particular, they play the role of pigeons at wedding ceremonies in the country. When the just married couple exits the church, butterflies are released into the air over their heads.
It is also possible to rent a waterfall in Belize. Pay a hundred dollars, and a waterfall will be at your complete disposal for the whole day. Total privacy guaranteed. There is another highly romantic hotel in Belize located in the Waterfall Valley. It is a 135-acre area with about 80 waterfalls, big and small. You can stand under the falling water or splash in a natural swimming pool feeling as if you were a Hollywood star. The waterfall alone is not enough to arouse this feeling? Ask for a glass of Champagne as you are sitting in the pool and you will get it.
If you stay at another hotel in the Belizean jungles, you can go on a horse-back riding tour through the forest and valleys. When you do, you are going to feel as if you were in Jurassic Park. The same plants that you have seen in the movie will make you anticipate that a dinosaur is going to come out from behind an unrealistically thick tree and walk past you in large steps.
There is also a guided night tour through the jungles that the hotel offers. Many species of bugs, birds, and animals are active only at night in the jungles and you cannot see them in the daytime. If you do not limit yourself to lying on the beach and swimming in the sea when visiting Belize, you can find lots of entertainment there. Trust us, you are not going to ever forget the trip and you will want to return.
Opening a bank account in Belize
Your trip to Belize does not have to be about only having fun, however. You can also do something useful for yourself while you are in the country. Belize is an offshore zone and a large regional financial center. The advantages of offshore banking in Belize are diverse and plentiful so you can open a bank account in the country while you are there. You will find that local banks offer a wide range of services to international clients and various tariff plans.
General information about setting up a bank account in Belize
There are several banks in Belize and each bank offers its own service conditions. Therefore, you would benefit from doing your homework and requesting some professional assistance if you are interested in setting up a bank account in Belize. Most banks in the country require an initial deposit, but the amounts of deposits can be different. We will use three Belizean banks as examples to show you how substantial the difference can be:
- Caye International Bank — from 1,000 USD;
- Heritage International Bank — from 3,000 USD;
- Belize Bank International — from 4,000 USD/EUR/GBP.
Besides, banks in Belize offer dissimilar sets of banking services to international customers. You have to make sure that the services that you need most of all are available in the particular bank that you are considering. If you would like to acquire a plastic pay card, you can do so with most Belizean banks.
You will gain the following main advantages of you order a plastic card from a Belizean bank:
- You can access your account via the Internet wherever you are at the moment and at any time of the day;
- You can make payments anywhere in the world;
- You can withdraw cash from any ATM no matter in what country it is located.
A bank account in Belize: additional opportunities
Depending on the bank that you choose, you can keep your money in different currencies in Belize including US dollars, euros, and pounds sterling. In addition to that, you may be able to use some additional services that the banks offer. The list of services will depend on the particular bank but the following services are normally available:
- Corporate lending;
- Safety deposit boxes;
- Fixed-term deposits;
- Mobile and Internet banking opportunities;
- Asset management;
- Investment management.
The monthly account maintenance fees are individual in each case as they directly depend upon the account turnover and the account balance at the end of the month.
So why not combine pleasure with business? Belize is a wonderful tourist destination but you can also open a foreign bank account while visiting the country. Please make sure that you prepare for the trip in advance. It is always a good idea to find out the basic information about a bank in advance. To spare yourself the trouble of exploring numerous websites, you can request expert advice. An offshore industry expert can tell you from the start which Belizean banks are the most reliable ones and which of them had better be scratched from your list.